There are a number of different things that could be causing your senior cat to be urinating so often and to have blood in her urine.
The things that I would be considering if your cat were on her way in to see me are:
1. Urinary Tract Infection.
This is by far the most likely thing. UTI's in female cats are fairly common.
The urethra (the tube between the bladder and the outside) is short and wide in female animals which allows bacteria an easy route to climb up into the bladder and cause infection.
Very young animals or senior animals are slightly more prone because their immune systems are not as strong as an cat in her prime. If this is what she has, a course of antibiotics should clear the problem up.
Here is more:
2. Your cat could have interstitial cystitis.
This is an inflammatory condition of the bladder that causes pain on urination, frequent urination, and often bloody urine. It would not be high on my list of possibilities because you have not reported her crying when she is urinating.
Here is more: http://www.veterinarypartner.com/Content.plx?P=A&A=651&S=0&EVetID=0
3. Your cat may have crystals in her urine.
The two main types of crystals that form in cats' urine are struvite crystals (about 95% are these) and calcium oxalate (about 4% are these). Struvite forms in urine that is too alkaline (not acidic enough) and calcium oxalate forms in urine that is too acidic. In order to determine what type of crystals may be in a urine sample, a vet would have to look at the urine under a microscope.
You are right that she should see her veterinarian when they are open. THey will very likely suggest doing blood tests as well as urine tests, and will start her on some antibiotics.
Now, in terms of what you can do to help until you can see your vet, the most helpful thing is to really encourage water consumption. The idea here is that this will help to flush out her bladder. It will make her much more comfortable.
In order to get her to drink more, I have some suggestions:
I suggest opening a can of tuna *in water* and offering her the liquid.
Also, you can pick up Clam Juice in most grocery stores (sold in with the V8 or with the canned tuna in my grocery store) and mix that with some water.
You could try Lactose Free milk (Lactaid is the Canadian brand).
Offer her some canned cat food, and mix it with water to make a slurry if she won't eat it.
Things you can do to encourage a cat to drink are:
- offer water from a very wide flat bowl as cats don't like their whiskers to touch the edges when they drink (which is why lots of cats like the toilet bowl).
- If she likes dripping water, leave a tap dripping for her.
- Offer bottled water and see if she prefers it.
- Offer onion free chicken broth, diluted 50:50.
- See if she likes water with an ice cube in it.
- See if she likes it out of a cup or martini glass.
- Offer Whiskas Cat Milk
It would be very helpful to encourage her to drink as much as possible regardless of whether she has FIC, crystals in her urine or a urinary tract infection. This is a safe and effective thing that you can do to really help her!
In terms of cranberry juice, cats don't really love cranberries, so it is quite hard to get juice into them in amounts that might help, though people often ask me about this.
However, you can add Uromaxx to the cat's diet. Uromaxx is a liquid that contains cranberry extract. It has been shown to reduce bacterial adhesion to bladder wall and reduce bacterial biofilm. The bacterial biofilm is the matrix that protect bacteria from antibiotics.
Follow directions on the label and add to the cats' food.
You can find some here:
Also, I do feel that increased drinking would be really helpful. I would like to see your cat drinking 1.5 cups of fluids a day. That would help her a lot!
I hope she feels much better soon!
If this has been helpful, please Accept my answer and leave feedback.
If you need more information, just click on reply and I will try to provide it!
The above is given for information only. Although I am a licensed veterinarian, I cannot legally prescribe medicines or diagnose your pet's condition without performing a physical exam. If you have concerns about your pet I would strongly advise contacting your regular veterinarian.